Kashmir Witnesses Massive Demand For The National Flag

SRINAGAR: With the national flag triggering a massive demand across Kashmir, a number of women’s groups including the Self Help Groups run by various official agencies have jumped to manage the demand. This August 15, the government decided that all the government buildings should have tricolour fluttering over them. Already various security agencies have had impressive tiranga rallies within Srinagar and the peripheral districts.

In Rajouri, a number of women in a self-help group have no time other than stitching the tricolour. Qamran Haneef, the Project Manager of the SHG said that the women start early in the morning and go home late in the evening because they have too much work.

Matsa Begum, one of the women in the group said they have been given a target and they will have to deliver it before Independence Day.

This year the government announced that the people must unfurl the national flag atop their houses to celebrate the 75 years of independence. This has added to the demand. The huge campaign is aimed at having a tricolour atop every school and home. In most districts, huge gatherings of the students are seen busy rehearsing for the event.

“The spirit of the younger generation is so high that they have started preparations for the event with regular rehearsals. Students are proactively participating in various activities and events and are very excited to perform in the upcoming Independence Day functions,” the spokesman said. “Flags have been distributed across all districts. Preparations are in full swing for the mega event of Har Ghar Tiranga from August 13-15 this year.”

Indu Kanwal Chib, Mission Director, JKRLM, told reporters that initially 11000 women were asked to sew flags but after gauging the response the numbers went up to 16000. A programme manager at Rajouri said the women earn a profit of Rs 8 on each tricolour. In one Rajouri centre, more than 20 thousand flags were stitched by 200 women.

Besides, the Department of Information and Public Relations (DIPR) also held an online competition in singing the national anthem from August 1-7. The competition saw around 9,000 entries having around 50,000 participants received from different parts of Jammu and Kashmir which is four times more than the entries received last year, Director DIPR, Akshay Labroo told reporters. “The winners of the competition will get cash awards of Rs 25,000, Rs 11,000 and Rs 5,000 for first, second and third prizes respectively besides getting an opportunity to sing the national anthem at the divisional level during the Independence Day celebrations.”

In Kawari and Kunan villages in north Kashmir, the army-supported centre has engaged almost 50 women to stitch the national flag. The centre has been working in these villages for last many months. The women in these centres are getting orders for the supply of flags on an almost daily basis.

The army has provided these women with stitching machines and raw materials, according to the head of the centre, Nazima Samundar. The centre is stitching more than 100 flags a day. The centre uses handwork for making embroidered Ashoka Chakra on the flag.

In neighbouring Baramulla, two similar centres located at Trikanjan and Bernate are also busy managing the demand of the national flag. Set up with the help of the army, these centres are exclusively managed by the centre and the machines have all been supplied by the army.

“I am the trainer here; we’ve been working here for two days, and it is a part of the Har Ghar Tiranga campaign,” Sabreena, the centre’s main trainer has told the ANI. “We have manufactured 250-250 flags and are grateful to the Indian Army for this opportunity.”

Meanwhile, a tricolour on a carpet is being presented to the Prime Minister on this Independence Day by Kashmiri artisan Mohammad Maqbool Dar. A resident of Ashtangoo in Bandipora, Dar is a carpet weaver who has already created history by weaving a mesmerizing Kashmir culture in a silk carpet wall hanging.

“It is my long cherished dream to present the carpet woven with Indian tricolour to the Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi on the forthcoming independence day of the country,” Dar told a news gathering agency recently.

The carpet-tricolour – 24 x 30 inches – being presented to Modi took his team of six girls more than two months to complete. The team is now busy weaving two more carpets with Indian tricolour of the same size but with different eye-catching colours in the background with the slogan Mera Bharat Mahaan on it.

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